Celebrating Nightingale 2020 Bicentenary

Florence Nightingale 200 years

International Year of the Nurse and Midwife

The Covid-19 Virus 

We are celebrating this upcoming year – the Bicentenary of Florence Nightingale across the world. Various groups have organized to determine the best to recognize her… within the limits now placed on us.

Our website is dedicated to sharing with you our activities, various opinions and that of others for 2020; and of course information vital to understanding Nightingale and how she influenced nursing is highlighted.

As front-line nurses and health professionals we have faced many challenges and adversities including staff shortages, violence/bullying, uncertain work and safety conditions, and wage imbalances. 

But it seems this current pandemic has engulfed us, as it is out of our control and still spiraling. We salute those of you who are bravely working in health care presently and at great personal risk. Be vigilant and be kind in your delivery of care – together this virus will be defeated. 

“Every nurse ought to be careful to wash her hands very frequently during the day.
…Florence Nightingale
(Nightingale was a strong advocate for infection control)

The Defiance of Florence Nightingale SMITHSONIAN MAGAZINE | MARCH 2020

By Joshua Hammer | Photographs by Tina Hillier (Passed Away Oct. 2019)

Scholars are finding there’s much more to the “lady with the lamp” than her famous exploits as a nurse in the Crimean War.

She’s the “avenging angel,” the “ministering angel,” the “lady with the lamp”—the brave woman whose name would become synonymous with selflessness and compassion. Yet as Britain prepares to celebrate Florence Nightingale’s 200th birthday on May 12—with a wreath-laying at Waterloo Place, a special version of the annual Procession of the Lamp at Westminster Abbey, a two-day conference on nursing and global health sponsored by the Florence Nightingale Foundation, and tours of her summer home in Derbyshire—scholars are debating her reputation and accomplishments.

For Full Article Click Here 


Who Is Florence Nightingale

  • Activist and pioneer in Nursing
  • Born in 1820 in Florence, Italy
  • Established the first nursing school worldwide in London, England
  • A mentor and role model in Nursing
  • Author,  systems thinker and pioneer public health reformer

Read more…


Our Bookmark

Definitions On Health

Available upon request. We look forward to sharing it with you.

Definitions assist us to reflect and understand our nursing practices and ourselves. Take a look and submit your own definition on Health.  What does it mean to you?

1. World Health Organization (WHO)
Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.

2. Nightingale
Health is not only to be well, but to be able to use well every power we have.

3. Carolyn
Health is a recognition of health limits and an ability to seek treatment with compliance towards a balance physically and mentally towards optimal function. 

Unusual Kindness

The phrase “unusual kindness” is of a religious nature – Act 28.2, and covers Nightingale in reference historically. It makes you think how important it is to be kind to each other and patient as well. With the stresses upon us it is easy to snap and be unruly in how we communicate. Nurses are known for being caring but kind as well – most important at these times.


What Nursing Means To Me

1. “2020 is a special year for Nurses around the world given the bicentenary of Florence Nightingale (The Lady with the Lamp). It is also marks the saddest times since the Spanish Flu of 1918. It has taken an international Pandemic disaster of Covid-19 around the world to recognize the value of nurses sacrificing their lives for others. We are ordinary people doing extraordinary things for those entrusted to us. Stress, isolation and fear are by-products of this Pandemic. We must take care of ourselves physically and emotionally to be prepared for the uncertainty that awaits us. Today we have many Florence Nightingales among us.”

 Vicky Thomas, RN Carefree Lodge, Scarborough

 2. “What does nursing mean to me is the ability to connect with another human being on a level that not much professionals have the opportunity to ability to help someone else in their day-to-day struggles with disease, survival, and if necessary, end of life support for them and their families. It’s a feeling like no other that you’ve accomplished for the end of the day.”

By Ingrid Garrick, RN Princess Margaret Hospital

 3. “Celebrating Florence Nightingale during Corona Virus Pandemic: Florence Nightingale’s legacy is especially relevant during this global crisis. Her leadership in caring for wounded soldiers using a scientific approach helped in their recovery. Her compassion for the downtrodden across national boundaries with her work among India’s most vulnerable and  protected many against starvation, and she demonstrated  compassion and the irrelevance of class lines or social status when she advocated for the rights of prostitutes. What is needed to get us through this crisis: science, compassion, and leadership; the very values and lessons of Florence Nightingale. Happy Nurses Week to all Nurses!”

By Sophia Lilly, RN North York General

4. “To me nursing is about teamwork, support and community. For the past month I have been working on a COVID positive floor. With the support created from our unit, we have been able to come and help the most vulnerable. I am honored  to be a nurse during this pandemic and be able to offer comfort and care to many.”

Lisa Romano, RN University Health Network

5. “Being a nurse means being there for a total strangers night and day. Nurses are advocates, leaders, professionals and collaborators. Nursing is selflessness. We put the patient our priority first. The patient must be able to trust us. We must take care of our patient with love, compassion, respect, dignity as if it is were our family member.”

Christina Buco, RN Princess Margaret Hospital


Please send us your thoughts on nursing!

In Collaboration with Dr. Lynn McDonald Professor Emerita

Lynn is an author of several books on Nightingale-most recently; Florence Nightingale, Nursing, and Health Care Today and the Collected Works of Nightingale. She is also a climate activist, prison reformer and former Member of Parliament. You can connect with her for more information on Nightingale in Backgrounders at www.nightingalesociety.com. She is cofounder and current chair of The Nightingale Society and has been a great support and inspiration to us throughout the last year. We do connect with her and other nursing colleagues from California and Ohio on a regular basis- sharing ideas on how best to recognize and promote Nightingale.

The Nightingale 2020 Team

Anne Clark RN

Retired Nurse and former ONA Board member

Nightingale Authority


Carolyn Edgar RN

Retired Nurse

Student in labour Studies -McMaster University


Cristina Buco RN

Frontline Nurse at PMH

Return to Work at
local 097


Eleanor Adarna RN

TGH Site Rep

Local 97 Executive Secretary Health and Safety Lead Rep